There are plenty of decent reasons for the Canadian left to object to former US Vice President Dick Cheney's speech at the Vancouver Club in Vancouver, BC this week.
It certainly doesn't excuse some of the things that took place outside the Vancouver club.
Outside the club, protesters did what left-wing protesters in Canada have now adopted as their top tactic at times such as these: they accosted the people who had paid their hard-earned money for the opportunity to hear Cheney speak. They blocked the sidewalk, refused these citizens safe passage, obstructed access to public property, and in one extreme example, assaulted a staff member at the club.
Yet if one relied solely on the reporting by left-wing media outlets, one would think that none of this ever happened. One would think that entirely peaceful protesters were assaulted by Vancouver police.
You would never hear from them the satisfaction that Pearson derived from the act, or the pleasure he's taking in the attention he's now receiving.
“It was so much fun,” Pearson remarked. “I can’t tell you how much fun I had. I was laughing my ass off, jumping into that mosh pit.”
“I call it fun," Person continued. "We wanted to draw people’s attention and show up to support our demands to have that evil bastard arrested for war crimes. If it bleeds, it leads. We got the media coverage we wanted.”
One would never hear a peep of this from Canada's far-left media. The Georgia Strait uploaded numerous YouTube videos of the protest, including some depicting what it considered the unwarranted actions of police officers clearing sidewalks to allow the citizens who very likely paid the lion's share of the cost of paving them. Rabble.ca featured an article penned by David P Ball complaining about police "roughing up" protesters.
Neither mention a single word about Pearson's actions, or about the man he assaulted. Not a single, solitary mention of the incident.
Do they approve of Pearson's actions, or are they just hoping that no one will take notice of them? It's difficult to say. But one way or the other, they're covering up Pearson's actions.
In other words: victor's justice before any victory has ever actually been won.
In the case of Dick Cheney, even if one finds the allegations that he authorized torture in the US forces -- and this author agrees that many of the "enhanced interrogation techniques" authorized by Cheney constitute torture -- there is the matter of precisely what they imagine the endgame to be.
As things currently stand, it isn't Cheney on trial.
There are certainly accusations outstanding against Cheney that he authorized torture. He doesn't deny them. But there is one key element missing in these people's endgame plan: a warrant.
If people such as Derrick O'Keefe were able to take Cheney into their custody tomorrow, as they imagine, and transport him to the Hague, as they imagine, Cheney would immediately be set free. It isn't up to Derrick O'Keefe to issue an arrest warrant for Cheney, and those to whom it is up to haven't issued that warrant.
In fact, O'Keefe and his merry band of showboaters would promptly wind up in custody for unlawful confinement; they have no authority to place Cheney under arrest.
Perhaps Dick Cheney should be standing trial in the Hague. That's for others to actually decide.
But the far-left media, for all its love of pinning violent incidents on their conservative opponents -- often under exceedingly self-generous pretenses -- should own up to and acknowledge the actions of Darren Pearson at the protest they themselves helped organize.
If they can't do this, they have no moral authority to denounce the actions Vancouver police did to assure the safety of people who had the right to access to the Vancouver Club and hear Dick Cheney speak.
Not that anyone should expect them to. It's just the way they operate.